Y's Yohji Yamamoto F/W 08.09 Beijing - Page 4 - the Fashion Spot
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Originally Posted by tricotineacetat View Post
I wouldn't complain about what's going on at Y's if it was for the fact that they'd show similarily strong collections and pieces as in this Beijing presentation and the last Red Label collection also to their international buyers... as I said before, this was NOT the case for their F/W 08 sales campaign... and yes, I think Y's (not Yohji Yamamoto Femme) had been treated somewhat like a step-child in the last few years - You could tell that there was a group of anonymous designers each contributing bits and pieces, but without a clear focus on what it shall look like as a whole - It shows in the difficulty to merchandise it in terms of looks, fabrics and colours. Certainly that was different when Nagano was head of design at Y's and also now with Michiko Suzuki (was that her name?) doing Y's Red Label - Then again, the collection wasn't entirely finished by the time the Paris sales started, so only bits and pieces of Red Label were hanging next to the regular Y's collection, to me that didn't make for a 'complete' concept in itself.

Not to go too deep into their company politics, but a lot of things have changed at Yohji Yamamoto Inc. over the course of the last few years - Their Paris branch was closed and there is an Italian agent involved in the whole marketing process of the company (insuccessfully at that, trying to launch a Y's Pre-Collection for S/S 2008, but discontinuing after only one season). It was also around that time that people like Nagano and the former CEO of the company left to pursue other projects (the former starting his own line and the latter taking on a similar position as CEO of Rue Du Mail).

Coming Soon probably has to be the least convincing addition to the Yohji universe, it simply doesn't work the same way as with McQueen, Moschino Cheap & Chic or See by Chloé to do a Yohji collection with cheap entry price materials. It only resulted in Y's pricing going steadily upwards, but without further refining the product.

Other than that, I still regard Yohji's own design for the Femme line to be of outstanding imagination, the last show and the pieces I could see in the showroom were all breathtakingly beautiful in the cutting... just crazy expensive as usual.

can you not come to see red label for a change then?
her collection is bringing some energy back to tokyo.
it may be tokyo (or japan or asia) that had been " treated like a step-child " for much longer while.

isn't there y's france now?
apparently the man, number two at YYinc, who is currently in charge of the whole overseas project is a former executive of lineapiu group italy. so he might have used some connections. and also the coming soon thing may be boring to you, but it assumes some significance. yohji has to take a pioneer part in apparel designer business in japan and make way for younger generation.
you know what burberry, lanvin, etc have been doing.
that is, japanese companies have almost always been licensee. so it's just rare for a japanese private fashion brand to become licenser this way and on this scale. it's even a bit of an epoch-making event for the country that is still young in experience of western clothes.
I know that has nothing to do with your business. just talking about some background.
european and american brands are still an overwhelming majority on the japanese market.
if you walk around, say, ginza, their stores line the best streets there. frankly most of the domestic designers simply cannot, because of the land prices risen by those legendary houses and what is called conglomerates and such.
it's about the same with his tometown, shinjuku, where his mother and yohji used to operate the dressmaker before y's. and the same is true of even the inside of department stores.
isetan shinjuku, the biggest fashion department store, used to have the corner store for yohji in its best location which is supposed to be the ground floor for japanese marketters. but since about ten years ago his store is being ousted day by day to the mediocre corner now. he had to find a way out of the current difficulty anyway.
he might have built up something in terms of design.
but is still overwhelmed business-wise.
and he did not start it to survive around the fashion greats, looking out for what they leave uneaten.
but to stand abreast and be something who can rival them in his own way.
if he wishes to be able to have his stores where he wants to have them in his homeland, and by that, wishes to encourage the next generation and also many flabby brands who are participating in tokyo collection, I'd understand that.

there seems to have been some aggressive replacement as well as restructuring.
in exchenge for the new project, they closed some important points of sales including roppongi y's flagship. also the three stores in france closed a business last year. according to the vice president, without any new backers, the company took a new turn, some of which may be allowing for his retirement. so actually some things changed. but they pushes ahead in spite of not so great situation. in this respect it's the same after all. and it's not like everything had been smooth before. I remember years ago the first batch of items still didn't arrive when october was approaching.
although I don't know how awkwardly they are doing overseas, I think what you said might partly originate in the fact that this is largely a family business. like his first born son as the head of the sales department for domestic market, almost out of nowhere. such things could depress those who had seriously supported the company for long, and be unacceptable.
but I guess they already noticed the importance of having a good grip.
also there is a matter of his state of health. apparently he hadn't been in good condition for the last few years. but he declared he was back in shape. so he is being more involved in y's now and hopefully it will be more organized and be improved over there.


Let the stars decide

Last edited by runner; 17-06-2008 at 09:24 AM.
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great, great post runner.

I think it's easy to forget, when we're in the rarefied environment of tfs, how relatively marginal many non-european labels are, especially financially and especially when compared to the luxury conglomerates. It's amazing what a battleground retail space is, especially in the big stores...

It's so great to hear about the company in multiple dimensions...i find it really fascinating. I have been wondering if there was something more behind all of these recent projects and expansions. It sounds like Yohji is intent on leaving a legacy, not only for his company but for Japan...and I think that's really very cool.

***I must admit I wince a little every time I hear mention of his retirement. But I think Michiko Suzuki is super talented and getting stronger with each collection...she is a great testament to this system of training designers.

....I mean the ephemeral, the fugitive, the contingent, the half of art whose other half is the eternal and the immutable."
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i agree...great post runner..:p

very interesting ...

i remember one of my first posts here on tFS was a question about how japanese designers stay in business...
even when they do not follow trends and seem to march to the beat of their own drum...staying true to their vision and their aesthetic...

*that post has been deleted since then...but i remember it well...
and to be honest...it was never really answered completely...

this explains a lot of things now runner...
thank you for all the interesting details and for the overview...

i have the same feeling as you laika...
i too cringe and wince at the idea that yohji is not doing super well as a company from a financial point of view...
and the idea of yohji retiring just fills me will sadness and a sense of overwhelming loss...

it is good to know that they 'powers that be' at the company are taking steps to keep things going and to even push the company forward though...
that is really reassuring to me...
and i never really considered the point about 'coming soon' and the issue of licensing etc...

i still have not seen most of the coming soon things...
where can we see them?
is it only in japan that it is available?

to be honest... in my opinion...Y's and plus Noir have been really what i have preferred in the last 2-3 seasons...
except the dinosaur collection -which was great..
but most of the main collection is quite difficult to wear...
not to mention the skyhigh prices...
really expensive and hard to wear is not really a great combination!

*though i think i have spent the majority of my retail dollars at the yohji store..

they ARE selling a decent amount of stuff in the NY Soho store...
i mean...they did just open another store in the meatpacking district this year...
and now they say they are also opening another store in soho soon!

maybe they are not doing so well as before in paris but they seem to be doing better than usual in NYC...and in the US in general...
at least from what i can tell...
seems that things have shifted and they are just making changes to keep up..

so that's good...

"It is not money that makes you well dressed: it is understanding."

Last edited by softgrey; 19-06-2008 at 02:22 PM.
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Originally Posted by new_dawn_fades View Post
it really saddens me that fashion gets so multinational but the models dont

that said...the clothes are great as always.


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thanks for posting those beautiful images.
post #3 1st picture is a gorgeous outfit.
also #20, 3rd picture. great outfit overall and i think that hat is amazing.
but i think they're all great.

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i am in love with that grey wool jacket with the attached scarf piece.

I cant wait for this collection. thanks runner

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0809, beijing, f or w, yamamoto, yohji
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